LGBT Info

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LGBT Info

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Jo is a main character in the famous novel Little Women. ) She declares to her three sisters that she cannot “get over [her] disappointment in being a woman.”, and wished to marry her sister Meg. Throughout the original Little Women story and its many adaptations, the core of Jo’s narrative arc is how she negotiates the many expectations placed on her because of her gender. As she aspires to make her own name as a writer, she constantly wishes that she could be a man so she can enlist in the war, not worry about finding a husband, and not fuss over “girly” things like frilly dresses and extravagant balls — unlike her sisters Meg and Amy. And although Jo forms a special bond and friendship with her wealthy neighbor Theodore “Laurie” Laurence throughout their childhood, she rebuffs his proposal for marriage when they are adults. As Gerwig has pointed out in interviews, the reason why Jo March has endured as a beloved pop culture heroine is not because she eventually marries Professor Behr. Rather, it’s because for most of the story, she tries her hardest to rebel against the trappings of heteronormativity that essentially forced women of the time to seek out a wealthy husband and to consider marriage “as an economic proposition.” In fact, Jo March was never intended to marry in the end, according to a letter that Louisa May Alcott wrote to a friend in 1869. Alcott, who also never married, felt pressured to give Jo a “funny match” because so many of her readers and fans insisted upon the character eventually settling down. Many think that Alcott could have been queer, too, because she once said in an 1883 interview: “I am more than half-persuaded that I am a man’s soul put by some freak of nature into a woman’s body … because I have fallen in love with so many pretty girls and never once the least bit with any man.”